Paleo Eats: 4/4/11

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Today, I cooked all my meals. Did you doubt that I’d follow through with my promise? Shame on you!

As soon as I woke up, I dumped some veggies and grass fed beef shanks in the slow cooker so we’d have something to eat tomorrow night after Big-O’s late T-ball practice.

This time, I did a mash-up of the slow-cooker pork pot roast and slow-cooker grass fed beef shank and cabbage stew recipes. I’ll post a recipe tomorrow.

For breakfast, I made myself a mushroom frittata with Sunny Paris seasoning, Fines Herbes seasoning, and a dollop of coconut cream.

I ate it with some leftover sautéed heirloom Italian broccoli.

For lunch, I cooked up a plate of  garbage stir-fry with sliced chicken breast, green garlic, mushrooms, shredded carrots, spinach, and Turkish seasoning. I chopped up some cold baked yams from the fridge and lunch was set.

While the kids reenacted Plants vs. Zombies in our family room, I prepped and trimmed some Brussels Sprouts (that I’d roast off at dinnertime)…

…and charred three large  bell peppers on our gas range.

I also, filled and set the SousVide Supreme to 135 F so it’d be ready to reheat some pork chops for dinner.

At 5:00 p.m., I started preparing dinner. I dunked the pre-cooked chops into the water oven (they reheat in about 30 minutes), roasted Brussels sprouts tossed with melted ghee, Fines Herbes seasoning, salt, and pepper…

…and broiled asparagus spears.

I squeezed some fresh lemon juice on both vegetable dishes.

Then, I took out my kitchen torch and browned the pork chops.

Here’s my dinner plate:

After dinner, I removed the beef shank and cabbage stew out of the slow cooker and transferred it into two storage containers. 

Hopefully, with all the cooking I did today, my meals tomorrow will be covered.

Late Night Eats: 1/3/11

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Here’s what I ate at work tonight:

I ate my first snack at 10:30 p.m. which consisted of a hardboiled egg, crudités and Aubergine dip.

"Lunch" was at 1:30 a.m. when I wolfed down some leftover curry ground pork and broccoli slaw frittata with a side of nuked frozen mixed veggies.

At 4:30 a.m., I ate a small container of coconut flakes and macadamia nuts. My favorite Paleo snack of all time.

At 7:00 a.m. I ate my last meal of the night.  I reheated some leftover grass fed beef shank and cabbage stew with garlic cauliflower mashed “potatoes” and roasted Tabil-seasoned cremini mushrooms.

I had me some good eats tonight.

Late Night Eats: 1/2/11

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As some of you are aware, I’m a night shift worker so I always need to pack meals to eat in the dead of night. I’ve decided to only write one post per night detailing my eats because it gets kind of repetitive. And I’m lazy, remember?

My first snack of the night was at midnight, when I ate some crudites and Aubergine dip. I would’ve eaten earlier but I snarfed down some macadamia nuts post-workout prior to coming to work, so I wasn’t hungry until the witching hour.

Around 2:00 a.m., I ate my “lunch,” which consisted of a lovely salad (greens with sous vide chicken breast, avocados, cucumbers, and shredded carrots) made by my fabulous hubby.

My second snack of the night was at 4:00 a.m.: A yummy bowl of coconut milk and blueberries.

I wolfed down my last meal at work shortly before 7:00 a.m., when I attacked a container of leftover grass fed beef shank and cabbage stew and cauliflower rice.

I think the key to keeping sane while working the graveyard shift is having a set routine and packing lots of leftovers. I’m glad I stopped experimenting with intermittent fasting, because that was a complete failure.

If I’m hungry, I’ll eat — but now, I’m paying greater attention so I don’t do it mindlessly.

Slow Cooker Grass Fed Beef Shanks & Cabbage Stew

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Makes 6 servings / Hands-On Time: 15 minutes / Total Time: 11 hours

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I’m always looking for shortcuts to deliciousness, so even though my last slow cooker experiment was an abject failure, I was determined to undertake a new experiment this morning. I’d defrosted a couple of 2-inch center cut grass fed beef shanks, and was looking forward to chucking everything into the slow cooker so I’d have a tasty cabbage and beef shank stew ready to devour when I woke up in the evening. (Well, I was hoping it’d be tasty…)

Here’s what I assembled:

  • ½ pound organic baby carrots
  • 2 medium onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 small cabbage (about 2 pounds), cored, and cut into 8 wedges
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 2 Turkish bay leaves
  • 2 center-cut grass fed beef shanks (about 2” thick)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 15 ounce can of organic diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup organic chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos

And here’s what I did with the stuff:

I dumped the baby carrots and chopped onions into the bottom of my slow cooker

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…and layered the cabbage wedges on top.

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I threw in the smashed garlic cloves and bay leaves, and seasoned the beef shanks with salt and pepper to taste (by the way, feel free to be pretty heavy-handed with the S&P).

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Then, I plopped ‘em on top of the cabbage.

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The last step was to pour in the diced tomatoes and broth…

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…before putting on the lid. I set the slow cooker on low and let it do its thing for 9 hours while I hit the sack. (Ah, the nocturnal life of a night shift worker…)

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When I woke up, the house was suffused with a rich, beefy aroma. I couldn’t wait to peek at the stew. Lifting the lid off the slow cooker, I saw that the meat had pulled away from the bone and the marrow was perfectly cooked. Score!

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I removed and plated the bones (and delicious marrow), shredded the meat, and tasted the stew for seasoning. The pot liquor was exploding with flavor, but it was a bit on the sweet side for my taste from all the onions and carrots, so I added a couple of tablespoons of coconut aminos and some more salt and pepper.

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In the meantime, I oven-roasted some cremini mushrooms tossed with Tabil seasoning and macadamia nut oil (400 F on convection roast for 25 minutes) and quickly whipped up some garlic cauliflower mashed “potatoes” (this time, substituting extra virgin olive oil for the grass-fed butter).

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Here’s my dinner plate:

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All in all, not too shabby for a simple dump-and-cover slow cooker meal. Because the meat was grass fed, it wasn’t quite as meltingly tender as your typical crappy (but admittedly yummy) grain ‘n corn-fed stuff. Nonetheless, it was TONS better than the grass fed “beef stew” that crawled out of my slow cooker a few days ago. Plus, bone marrow is just so damn tasty –- mouth-filling, fatty, and full of umami goodness. I’m really happy I joined our meat CSA; left to my own devices, I never would’ve thought to buy beef shanks. Now, I’m gonna order them as extra items when I get next month’s box o’ animal parts!